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GIGI PEREZ on her EP How To  Catch A Falling Knife

Gigi Perez EP Art.jpg

WORDS by Tessa Swantek  TALENT Gigi Perez  PR°1824 

press conference

Gigi Perez’s EP How To Catch A Falling Knife is like green noise - it is not silent, but silences. It feels like walking through a forest that your brain perceives as muted, but your body feels in every single bone. Like a flooding deprivation tank. It’s all consuming in such a quiet way. It’s so loud. 

That doesn’t make sense, but that’s how it

Her tone is, at times, animalistic - it seems to reach a frequency that you can barely hear, but you can feel it rush through you. The first track of the EP, “Kill For You” ascends into a visceral wail. When asked about the track, Gigi shares, “I was tapping into something more obsessive and dark with a certain toxicity and delusion. When I experienced my first intense loss [the loss of her sister, Celene], it became very apparent to me how crazy your brain can get. It was something I was ashamed of - like literally wanting to dig somebody from the ground. It doesn’t make sense and it doesn’t have to.” Gigi describes the EP as “not a guide but a question.”

In loss’ gaping hole, senses flood in. “Glue,” “Figurines,” and “Balsam Fir” feel most like intense sensory experiences. When asked to choose a word to describe each of the EP’s tracks, Gigi chooses “bereavement” to describe “Glue.” The track is nearly tangible; it tastes like poison, it looks green, it feels humid and sticky.  She sings, “How I cringe when I see green/ How it hurts without Celene/ 'Cause you are my glue/ And in all that I do / You're dripping onto me.” Gigi shares, “The person that I portrayed prior to this project was someone who had a wall up. I thought at one point that vulnerability meant they had power over me and that it was a weakness. If they knew how I felt they’d use it against me. The entire EP - at one point I was so nervous sharing. As time went by, I realized this is a story worth sharing and it helped me let go of the rope.” She explains that “Glue” was particularly hard for her to share, as she says “When I look back at “Glue” and how I second guessed it, I’m so glad I didn’t listen to the voices telling me to keep it inside. Heartbreak is so lonely so we should be there for eachother.”

At the height of “Glue” she screams, “No more green/ No more Celene/ It can't be/ It can't be.” The lyrics make me think of Gigi saying, “I saw an interesting thought about why heartbreak is so hard and it’s because it feels final.” She later shares, “I have a fear of everything ending.” “Figurines” is the track that Gigi says best exemplifies this existentialist terror and eventual acceptance of it. She says, “I have always felt an intense connection to ‘Figurines.’ It's flowy and glowy but there’s a certain angst to playing it live…it steps out of a personal heartbreak and goes to the existential realm from where everything stems.” Listening to this track also feels like a sensory experience - it tastes bitter and saccharin, it feels like floating, it looks sea blue and green.

"I t tastes like poison. 

It looks forest green. 

It feels humid."

"Glue" by Gigi Perez
Official Visualizer

Green stitches the EP together by needlepoint. When asked what hue best exemplifies the project, she shares, “hunter forest green. That colored the love that I experienced. The person was obsessed with that color and in falling in love, it changed the way I saw green. Afterwards, green was very hard to see. It took a new breath and life when I saw it through the eyes of love.” “Balsam Fir,” my favorite track, is so highly saturated, it drips. It’s potent. Gigi describes this track with one word, “yearning.” She sings, “I went and bought myself a Balsam Fir/ I went and got myself thinking of her/ I drove around and looked at every tree/ I had to stop when I lost feeling in my knees” and “I wish that everything wasn't so green/I wish it didn't make me think of you.” When asked what setting would be perfect to listen to the EP in, she says, “complete darkness with my airpods in. It would also probably be really beautiful going through a forest.” “Balsam Fir” feels most like it creates the EP’s world that each song lives and breathes in. 

The last track, “Sally,” much like “Balsam Fir” is transportive. Both feel as if they take you right back to the past like a spray of perfume in an empty room. She sings, “I'm not who you met at the turnstile/But there's a phone that could trace us right back to the day /When you stood on the train and you smiled.” When describing Sally on her Instagram, she writes, “There’s something to be said about the universal experience of a visceral and all consuming first queer love, and how empty the room becomes when that person is gone. This song is the first time I've directly spoken about a woman in my music, and as I sit here writing this I’m reminded of the fifteen year old girl who was deathly afraid of anyone ever knowing. How strange it feels to be adjusted to being comfortable with yourself, when not many years ago it was a far off dream. Being gay when I grew up meant eternal separation from God. It was something that could be prayed out. Something I battled every teenage year, but always fell short of. And maybe that's why my relationship with Sally was so intense. Maybe that's why a lot of queer people I know have their own Sally.” To end the EP with this track is to come to a point of acceptance, not of the answers but of the questions.

"[Hunter forest green] colored the love that I experienced. The person was obsessed with that color and in falling in love, it changed the way I saw green. Afterwards, green was very hard to see. It took a new breath and life when I saw it through the eyes of love.”

Gigi Perez

At the end of June and August, Gigi will be playing a few shows in San Francisco, France, and London. When asked about her most memorable concert experience, she shares, “Indigo De Souza in Nashville in 2021. I saw her for the first time a while ago in a bar in Boston and there were only 30 of us. The first show was insane and then the second was like I just went to church. She has a really deep connection to her voice. As much as I am a musician and performer, I’m a vocalist so seeing someone blow me away with vocals and operatic register [was so inspiring].”  I imagine seeing Gigi live would also be a church-like experience - all consuming. Her music needs to be felt thumping through your chest. She says, “Live shows are where I thrive the most in terms of getting the story across. Seeing how crowds react to certain things helps you lean in and analyze what’s so special about something that maybe I didn’t even see.”

While How To Catch A Falling Knife writhes with heartbreak and grief, it is important for Gigi to not be defined by her trauma. She says, “Everything from my project was exacerbated by 100 from the loss of my sister. I was nervous about being the girl who went through that. But that’s not who I am. You’re not your trauma or your grief. I can now be there for other people.” She also says, “The most important thing for me is to be a vessel to where others can experience whatever they need to experience like a projecting board. Ultimately, it’s important that whatever I do helps people experience themselves, not me.”

Connect With Gigi:
Listen to How To Catch A Falling Knife Here


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